Another man comes around twice. A week after Josh Donaldson accounted for all the Braves runs with a pair of solo homers, Freddie Freeman countered with a pair of 2-run homers, and threw in an RBI single for good measure. Both Freddie’s homers came off Lucas Giolito, opening the scoring in the bottom of the first, and breaking a 2 – 2 tie in the 6th.
The Braves managed to follow neither homer with a shutdown inning. With 2 out in the 2nd, Julio Teheran walked Yolmer Sanchez and Adam Engel, then watched as the Sox 7th and 8th place hitters scored on a gap single by Giolito. Chicago concluded their scoring in the 7th off Luke Jackson, who allowed a couple of hits, a walk, and threw a wild pitch.
Freeman’s second homer gave the win to Teheran, who allowed 3 hits, walked 4, and struck out 5 in his 6 innings. Shane Greene and Mark Melancon threw perfect innings apiece; Melancon with the shutdown inning after Freddie’s 8th inning RBI, and his 8th save.
Ronald Acuna Jr. stole his 32nd and 33rd bases and scored 2 runs, and Johan Camargo, just recalled from Gwinnett, doubled as a pinch hitter for Teheran. The Braves also activated Brian McCann, who went 0 – 3. Chad Sobotka and Jeremy Walker round out the first wave of September additions.
September is kicked off with the conclusion of a 3 game sweep, and the Braves maintain a 5.5 game lead over the Nationals. The month’s highlights include 7 games with the Nationals and 7 games with the Phillies (and 0 with the Marlins.) Both the Braves and Nationals are playing .700 ball the last 20 games, so brace yourself for an almost inevitable decline at some point in the month.